Manca, 29, dancer.
Daughter Nora, 9 months.
"I cannot imagine our maternity leave being shorter. It takes time to get used to breastfeeding and cutting it off is quite a frustrating thing for both the baby and the mother. If you want to breastfeed you always have to be there, available. "
"My parents who don't live that far away help me a lot with daily tasks. They cook me lunch so I don't have to, and they babysit so I can take breaks. They are there with helpful advice and we talk when I need it. "
"I still try to do some work. We are in times when we cannot say 'no' to things. As a freelancer, if I decline now, when my maternity leave ends, I will probably no longer hear from the client. And also, after six months, when you find your routine with the baby, you get a bit bored in your head."
"It's good not to be all alone, so you don't close in and become asocial, which can happen rather quickly."
"It's magical to be with the baby and watch his progress daily. "
"It's beautiful to hug and cuddle. It's a totally new feeling, a new love. It's actually the strongest emotion, next to romantic love that happens to you maybe once in your life. Just the latter lasts for a limited time, but with the baby, it's forever. "